A Midnight Rendezvous – The 32nd Psalm
How to Classify This Poem?
I’m not sure how to classify this poem. it is definitely on the dark side but a little quirky. I guess you’ll just have to read it and judge for yourself. I have a feeling you will either love it or hate it, but I welcome feedback in the comments. The meter and ambience of this piece are meant to be similar to Edgar Allen Poe’s poem “The Raven.” I hope you can read it with that in mind.
This poem was originally published on HubPages and anyone who is also a member there may have read it previously. However, despite me considering it one of my best works, it lingers there among my lowest scoring hubs. For that reason, I decided to share it here among my esteemed poetic and creative writing peers.
A Midnight Rendezvous – The 32nd Psalm
‘Twas midnight when I chose to wander
Down the dark foreboding streets.
For my failed attempt at slumber
Is just one more of my defeats.
Street lights shone upon the pavement,
Though dimly through the heavy smog.
My sense acute to every movement,
What was that? .. Oh, just a dog!
Hat pulled down to meet my collar,
Shoulders hunched against the cold.
Gloved hands fumble for a dollar,
At times like this, I feel so old.
The late-night diner’s sign says “OPEN”,
I push through the creaking door.
The city hasn’t yet awoken,
A cleaner sweeps the grimy floor.
A board above the cafe’s counter
In chalk says “Special of the Day”.
I brace myself for the encounter,
Like a sinner who’s about to pray.
Her eyes survey me as I enter,
The smell of coffee fills the air.
I am not here for idle banter,
But lift my hat and smooth my hair.
“Black!” The only word that’s spoken.
The woman looks at me and grins.
The coins I have are just a token
To help absolve me of my sins.
I lift a chair from off a table
Far back in the darkened room.
Coffee helps to keep me stable
But doesn’t help expel the gloom.
I rest my chin upon my arms,
Start to contemplate my life.
Then she strolls over with her charms,
“Is there anything else you’d like?”
My only friend, no not quite that,
In this garbage bin of life.
I give a nod and tip my hat
To my twenty dollar wife.
I take a note from out my coat,
At least to pay I’m able.
She kneels down on the vinyl floor
And crawls beneath the table.
Not a single word is said,
My money coats her palm.
She smiles and bows her pretty head,
I recite my favourite psalm.
I put my troubles to arm’s length
For just the shortest time.
This brief encounter gives me strength
For the mountains, I must climb.
I stand to leave, my conscience clear,
As she sits and wipes her mouth.
I close the swinging cafe door
And walk towards the south.
Arriving home I shower and dress,
Then take some time to pray.
All my sins I must confess,
It is the Sabbath day.
At church, I give my sermon
About avarice and greed,
How the Bible has the answers
That all of us should heed.
Never judge your fellow man,
If you sin don’t cast a stone.
You cannot walk in other’s shoes,
You must face the Lord alone.
None of us is perfect,
But God forgives our sins,
So live your life the best you can
And leave the rest to Him.
My friends, if life gets desperate
And you think you’ll do some harm,
Just open up “The Word of God”
Read the 32nd Psalm.
by John Hansen © 2015
I decided to submit this poem to the recent Wildsound Festival where it was read by a professional actor and published on YouTube. Please watch and listen to the video below. I hope you enjoy the reading.
After a lot of procrastinating I have finally self-published my first eBooks of poetry "I Laughed a Smile" and "On the Wings of Eagles" at Lulu.com.Now I find myself branching out and experimenting with short fiction.
I have also been fortunate to have two poems chosen to be made into songs and recorded. The first "On the Road to Kingdom Come" by Al Wordlaw, and the second, "If I Could Write a Love Poem" by award-winning Israeli/British singer Tally Koren.
I am also finding my services increasingly in demand as a freelance writer and I have ghost-written the text for a number of children's books and educational tutorials.
It has taken me many years of searching and restlessness to realise that my life's passion is to write. It saddens me that I wasted so many years not devoting to that, but thinking positively, the experiences gained over those years is now wonderful material for my stories and poems.
I want to try to bring a new focus on poetry and try to make it appealing to a new generation of young people and those who thought they never liked or understood it before.